US Admits Use of Depleted Uranium in Syria

Between the strikes on the two dates, 5,100 rounds of 30mm DU ammunition were used by A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft. This equates to 1,524kg of DU. CENTCOM said that the ammunition was selected because of the “nature of the targets”.
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    Secretary of State John Kerry is threatening to cut off all contacts with Moscow over Syria, unless Russian and Syrian government attacks on Aleppo end. The State Department says Kerry issued the ultimatum in a Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2016, telephone call to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

    Secretary of State John Kerry is threatening to cut off all contacts with Moscow over Syria, unless Russian and Syrian government attacks on Aleppo end. The State Department says Kerry issued the ultimatum in a Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2016, telephone call to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

    (ICBUW) – The US has finally confirmed that it has fired DU ammunition Syria, after it had earlier stated that the weapons would not be used. US Central Command (CENTCOM) has acknowledged that DU was fired on two dates – the 18 and 23 November 2015. Between the strikes on the two dates, 5,100 rounds of 30mm DU ammunition were used by A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft. This equates to 1,524kg of DU. CENTCOM said that the ammunition was selected because of the “nature of the targets”.


    The news comes as governments are debating a UN General Assembly resolutionon DU weapons in New York. And, although DU use has only been admitted on two dates, ICBUW and PAX are concerned that this disclosure could be the sign that DU has, or will, be used more widely in the conflict.


    In March 2015, and following the deployment of A-10s to the conflict, the US hadconfirmed to journalists that the aircraft would not be armed with DU, stating: “U.S. and Coalition aircraft have not been and will not be using depleted uranium munitions in Iraq or Syria during Operation Inherent Resolve.” Justifying the decision, CENTCOM public affairs explainedthat:  “The ammunition is developed to destroy tanks on a conventional battlefield; Daesh does not possess large numbers of tanks.”


    CENTCOM confirms DU use

    IRIN news finally extracted the confirmation that DU had been used from CENTCOM on October 20, and after weeks of denials. The revelations first came to light after an aide to Congresswoman Martha McSally (Rep, AZ) – herself a former A-10 combat pilot – responded to a question from DU activist, and constituent, Jack Cohen-Joppa. However a number of CENTCOM sources initially denied that the information was accurate. Confirming that the data were indeed accurate, a spokesperson for CENTCOM said earlier denials were due to “an error in reporting down range.”


    “Without the chance disclosure from McSally’s office, and the dogged pursuit of CENTCOM by IRIN, the US would not have volunteered this data,” said ICBUW Coordinator Doug Weir. “Sadly this is typical of the poor transparency we have seen from the US and we urge CENTCOM and the Coalition to clarify their policy on DU use in Syria and explain how its use fits with its public claims that the ammunition is solely for use against armoured targets.


    Unclear why DU was used

    The US regularly states that DU ammunition is specifically used only for engaging armoured targets, in accordance with its own legal guidelines, although evidence from a number of conflicts has shown that these guidelines are commonly ignored. ICBUW had earlier analysed the target information released by CENTCOM for the two dates in question. On neither date did CENTCOM explicitly state that it had launched attacks against armoured vehicles, with the majority of strikes against Islamic State light tactical vehicles, vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices and oil infrastructure. Such targets have been attacked regularly by the US-led Coalition, apparently without resorting to the use of DU.


    The most unusual strike that ICBUW identified took place on the 18th November, when the US attacked 283 parked oil tankers, however the A-10’s alternative 30mm ammunition type – a high explosive incendiary round – would presumably have been sufficient to destroy tankers laden with oil.  Footage released from the strike is indicative of 30mm DU use.

    Recently published data from the 2003 Iraq War showed that A-10s used more DU against targets that were not tanks or armoured vehicles, questioning the current US justification that DU was needed in Syria. Historic data from the Gulf War also demonstrated that most armoured targets destroyed by A-10s were targeted by Maverick missiles, not DU.


     What must happen now

    ICBUW and PAX are calling for urgent clarification from the US authorities on both the incidents and its DU policy for the conflict, and for them to swiftly release detailed and accurate targeting data to ensure that the relevant authorities can conduct clearance and risk awareness efforts and isolate and recover contaminated material.


    “Given DU’s nature as a toxic and radioactive heavy metal, and concerns previously expressed by Syrian civilians that it might be used, it’s deeply worrying that the US chose to use DU again,” said PAX’s researcher Wim Zwijnenburg.“The US should provide all target data and technical assistance to mine-clearance organisations and local authorities to ensure that swift clean-up operations for this low-level radioactive waste is undertaken to prevent Syrian civilians being exposed.”


    “Public relations efforts are indicated”

    The US has long been conscious of the stigmatisation of the use of DU weapons. As far back as 1991 the US military were advised that: “…fielding and combat activities [with DU] present the potential for adverse international reaction.” It was therefore predictable that Russian state media quickly highlighted news that DU had been used in Syria, with Russia’s embassies in Paris, Ottawa and Londontweeting the news, as Russia sought to draw attention away from its own conduct in the conflict.


    Russia has its own stocks of DU weapons and consistently abstains on DU resolutions at the UN General Assembly. It seems inevitable that, given the widespread global opposition to the use of the weapons, the Russian and Syrian governments will continue to use the news that DU has been used against the US and its coalition allies.


    This report prepared by ICBUW


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    • malbago

      More than 1,820 tons of radioactive nuclear waste uranium were exploded into Iraq alone in the form of armor piercing rounds and bunker busters, representing the worlds worst man made ecological disaster ever. 64 kg of uranium were used in the Hiroshima bomb. The U.S. Iraq Nuclear Holocaust represents far more than fourteen thousand Hiroshima’s. The nuclear waste the U.S. has exploded into the Middle East will continue killing for billions of years and can wipe out more than a third of life on earth. Gulf War Veterans who have ingested the uranium will continue to die off over a number of years.

    • malbago

      ”Those working for the government and media must wake up and take responsibility for immediately reversing this U.S. Holocaust. Understanding who is manipulating all of us is critical for all of us.”

    • Lex McGuire exercon

      Yes, that is war.

    • Mikronos

      Where hasn’t US used depleted uranium, since 1977, in 30 mm anti-armor ammunition – (the GAU-8 weapon was deployed with the A-10 aircraft and main gun on the Bradley AFV) ?

      DU has been used in US made artillery rounds and in hand grenades.

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    • Vierotchka
    • Vierotchka
    • Vierotchka

      Using depleted uranium is the worst war crime and crime against humanity.

    • Ed Yee

      I have handled depleted uranium. Due to its heavy density, depleted uranium is used on balance weights on control surfaces of aircraft. It is also used as armor piercing bullets as it is so heavy that it packs a lot of energy. It is used as armor plate for tanks as it is so dense. While depleted uranium might be toxic. I am not sure if any long-term study has been done on health hazard of depleted uranium but we know lead is toxic. So, lead which is a known toxic material is ok to use as a bullet but not depleted uranium.
      The question for those who question the use of depleted uranium is; What kind of material should the bullets be? Copper, Silver or Gold?

      • Mikronos

        Tungsten worked in much the same way. The danger of DU is that it is frangible to some extent and ‘spalls off’ in dust and small particles that can be blown, or tracked around – getting into food and water sources. Given the half life of DU (about 2 billion years) and it’s effect on cells when ingested, it has the potential to cause some long-lasting damage in areas where it is heavily prevalent.

        • Ed Yee

          Tungsten is very hard and heavy but cost 5 to 9 times more than depleted uranium depending on the form. I googled and found Tungsten cost $25 to $45 per pound verse $5 per pound for depleted uranium. It also costs more to manufacture due to its hardness and high melting temperature. Tungsten is used in cutting tools and quite a few applications that require heat resistance, hardness. The filaments of light bulbs are made of tungsten. It is even used in some jewelry. Tungsten indeed is used in projectiles but it is not use in large number due to limited supply and most likely cost.
          If we were to stop using DU projectiles, should we stop using lead?

      • Darwin K. Hoop

        All sorts of problems with your reasoning here. For one, there is no need to be using any sort of shell or bullet in Syria or anywhere else in the world right now. These are lawless, immoral, genocidal acts of imperialism. Thus, there is no justification of any sort for the use of DU or lead in the armed forces right now. Another fallacy you have introduced as a premise to their argument is that somehow lead and DU are similarly toxic. They are not, not even close. DU is vastly more genotoxic and remains biologically available in this genotoxic form for millennia. Next, there is no need for lead in bullets whatsoever. There are many kinds of metals that are sufficiently heavy to suit the purposes of bullet makers. Steel shot, for instance, is mandated by law in many areas and hunting has not been impacted. There is thus no need to use lead in bullets of any kind. If the US wants to use high-energy projectiles in tiny number of expected occasions where it finds itself in a just war, let it use tungsten or a plasma jet technology to penetrate armor. Were it the only option in the world, DU use would not be justified when the cost is tens of thousands of years of horrific birth defects in the area around which it was used (though clouds of DU dust from Iraq are known to have travelled all the way to Europe). No justification for it. None.

    • Joan Russow

      in 1999, I was at the International Court of Justice where Yugoslavia had taken the NATO States to the ICJ over the invasion of Yugoslavia. NATO was asked if it used depleted Uranium. The US responded with “yes” and then declared DU was a conventional weapon.

      • Darwin K. Hoop

        How absurd! If it is somehow still classified as such, this is a bureaucratic matter that does not represent the physical facts surrounding DU and there needs to be a push to have it be reclassified. The people of the former Yugoslavia have tens of thousands of years worth of birth defects to look forward to.

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    • GangusCong

      Do these nutjobs even understand what Depleted Uranium is??? I highly doubt it. Every modern tank uses depleted Uranium in their armor. That’s because the only thing that can penetrate Depleted Uranium is Depleted Uranium. It’s like how the only thing that can cut a diamond is another diamond. If ISIS is using any tanks….. you better believe the only way we can attack them is with depleted uranium weapons and ammunition!

      Here you go….. morons;
      In over 20+ yrs of DU use in the Iraq War and from there on here’s the truth; “So far no health problems associated with DU exposure have been found in Veterans exposed to DU. Researchers and clinicians continue to monitor the health of these Veterans.” It’s like the warnings on near every prescriptions, saying exposure to DU could cause problems. But….. when it’s the only way you can kill enemy tanks, what are you going to do??? Just let ’em kill you in your DU Armored Tank???? Really just F****** stupid for sure!!!

      • Villainess

        The article clearly noted that neither claimed use was against tanks. Who’s the nutjob?

        • GangusCong

          I never claimed actual use for those purposes took place. I only stated the fact that use includes those uses. How were they used then if you know so much? Neither of us can answer that, but to portray US use of Depleted Unranium as against Nuclear Proliferation or UN treaties against abusive use of DU is simply stated….. Asininely Ridiculous!!!

          Now go ask France, Russia, and UK if they’ve used DU, so then you might understand how common is to put Depleted Uranium to use in War Zones? It’s a ‘So What’….. our troops and enemies know it. So why make such a big deal out of nothing…. new? Again…. depleted uranium is like it’s name implies….. Depleted of any excessive radiation properties. It’s back to being in enerd material, like everything else around it. It’s why troops don’t worry about exposure to DU…. in the place numbnutz!!!

          ……and yet idiots like YOU…. can’t quite comprehend the fact that Depleted means it’s radioactive properties are completely gone in the first place and you can’t make a nuclear weapon or use it to kill people any different than any other material used to make any DU ammunition or harmful to humans derivatives. This story is pointlessly pressing issues of Health and Safety. When they’re are no such issues involved with DU use in the first place!!!

          • Villainess

            No nutz here. Numbovaries, perhaps? Anyway, I did some research a couple a years back, not on our service members, but on the hardest DU hit communities in Iraq which were having massive increases in number and severity of birth defects and miscarriages. UN investigators were attributing them to our use of DU without any cleanup. Our own media has become so partisan that it’s hard to believe so much of their reporting.

            Also, I have come to the studied belief that one of the biggest reasons that our system resists shutting down uninsured nuclear energy plants is that the Pentagon insists on a source to harden their ammunition. I

            • Zeet

              List your studies please or stfu.

          • Moh Moss

            so you agree that USA been in illegal wars for 222 years out of 239 years, and also USA like most countries in Europe are built on enslavement,genocide,and robbery.

            • Drawer22

              Moh Moss – I must have missed that! Where did “George Washington” so state?

              De Oppresso Liber

            • Mikronos

              Who said anything about illegal? It’s about being a nation at war for all but 17 of the two centuries it has been in existence.

              If you had a neighbor that punchy, the vigilance committee would have lynched him and probably most of his young-uns. That zombie-quality aggression.

              Which brings up a recent social development ….. zombies.

          • 1hiddencosts1
          • Depleted does not mean radioactive properties are gone at all. Rather, when 25% of the radioactivity is gone, it is no longer fit for reactor use. Do you seriously think the organization that used Agent Orange in Nam has suddenly become concerned with the risks of people dying from ordnance ? You cannot use DU as a bullet without fine powder being produced from rounds. Belgian troops in Iraq were known to avoid fire bases which had been used by US troops because geiger counter readings indicated dangerous levels of radiation.

      • Katana Man I don’t think you need du weapons to destroy a tank at all Tardmaster.

        • Drawer22

          Katana Man – You’re right! Tactical nuclear arms could have been used in their stead.

          De Oppresso Liber

          • Mikronos

            Right on bro. If all those million dollar high-tech doodahs joe public has purchased for the finest warriors on planet erth ain’t stopping the goat-feackerx , u use what you got in the ditty bag. Booyeah!

        • Mikronos

          AQ was doing it with plastic jugs full of ‘Whammo’ and ‘shaped charge’ sewage piping.

      • My Gana

        Gulf uranium warning failed to reach troops
        Veterans angry as MoD admits finding ‘lost’ safety message

        evidence at the inquest, Professor Christopher Busby, an expert on the
        effects of uranium on health, said Mr Dyson’s cancer was ”more likely
        than not” caused by ingestion and inhalation of the substance during
        his service in the Gulf.”

        Ex-soldier died of cancer caused by Gulf War uranium
        death of an ex-soldier, Stuart Dyson, from cancer was caused by his
        exposure to depleted uranium during the 1991 Gulf War, an inquest jury

        Talk – Dr. Doug Rokke – Depleted Uranium (DU)

        The War Against Ourselves


        73,000 US Military
        Dead Since Gulf War 1?

      • Deezee Aryan

        You are what the rest of the world calls an uneducated war-mongering US stooge. You come very close to the IQ level which George W Bush possessed. You dont seem to have travelled much so are not aware of the disgust and hatred the rest of the world has against US citizens. So, in hindsight, stop calling those in the know, “nutjobs”, and just read these articles, do not comment. One day, maybe, when you have acquired sufficient humility, you will be able to post your reply in a more rational and respectful manner. Your arrogance will disappear when you should come to realise that the days of US hegemony are waning.

        • Drawer22

          Deezee Aryan – The characterizations you use to describe those better informed than you are typical of those preferred by “progressive” regressives who are politically somewhere to the left of Karl Marx. Along with “racist,” “misogynist” and other, similar, knee-jerk labels, they have so frequently and blanketly mischaracterized people that they have lost their effect as to have lost all meaning.

          Adding to the above, characterizing proglibiotic nutjobs as being “those in the know” is now so ridiculous as to be instantaneously laughable. With time even a chuckle at them will disappear, as the misinformation becomes even better known by the majority of those sufficiently intelligent to recognize hucksters for the frauds they are.

          Rant on, while your rants are still humourous.

          De Oppresso Liber

          • 4thHorseman of the Confederacy

            nice! well stated!

            • Drawer22

              4thHorseman of the Confederacy – Thanks, my brother-at-arms.

              De Oppresso Liber

      • Mikronos

        These ‘nut jobs’ are just ordinary Joes, or extraordinary Joes, risking their lives to defense the rest of the sheeple and their freedoms. If they could handle DU ammunition with no harmful consequences should it be a shock when they find out the stuff is more dangerous than they were told? Chances are the NCOs discouraged them licking, or kissing the stuff good-bye, but somebody, apparently unthinkingly, forgot to tell troops deployed they were marching through areas where the dust and dirt was full of the stuff. It’s OK, though, most of them are dead now and affected offspring are on disability benefits.

    • Richard Einstein

      Soon America will have a real DOJ for the first time in over 50 years. We have thousands of criminals to hang for war crimes and high treason, beginning with Barry Soetoro… then George Bush…. both Jr and Sr….

    • stephenverchinski

      No altruistic actors here on the world stage. Looking for them and want them as leaders. I am tired of the lack of cooperative survival behavior. We all should be.

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    • bsroon

      The Unazied States of America welcomes you. (You WILL obey…)

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    • And of course, except for us down here, no one complains. No one cares…

      Too busy blaming Putin for exposing “crooked hillary” for the demented donald.

      • Drumroll

        “And of course, except for us down here, no one complains. No one cares…”

        I care! It’s also being used in war games and left on the seabed off the Pacific Northwest Coast!” See excerpts below and follow link to full article.

        “Navy’s Use Of Depleted Uranium In Coastal Waters Threatens Humans, Wildlife”
        By Dahr Jamail,
        November 1st, 2016
        Posted on Popular Resistance

        “Earlier this month, Truthout reported that the US Navy is knowingly introducing toxic metals and chemicals into the environment during its war game exercises.

        Sheila Murray with the Navy Region Northwest’s public affairs office, when asked what the Navy was doing to mitigate environmental contamination from the large numbers of Depleted Uranium (DU) rounds it left on the seabed off the Pacific Northwest Coast claimed current research “does not suggest short- or long-term effects” from the release of DU to the environment that could result in its uptake by marine organisms.”

        She also said that DU rounds “are extremely stable in sea water and pose no greater threat than any other metal.”

        • What, you’re not one of us down here?

          They also admitted a while back to using white phosphorus remember? And who besides us down here cares? And I mean empathically, and not by an agenda of ruling the spoils.

          Nothing, Ms Sheila Murray, potentially toxic is safe anywhere in our environment. Unless you just refuse to believe in random accidents. Sometimes we are just soooo too big for our britches aren’t we?

          • Drumroll

            I’m going to do a little homework because I have never heard a peep about any of this. There is always some flak going around about the training flights from Whidbey Island Naval Air Station because they fly over our area and make a lot of noise, but nothing about fouling the water in the Strait of Juan de Fuca or the ocean. Once I have my ducks in a row, I’m calling a friend of mine who is on the City Council here in Sequim. I’ll keep escalating it until I get an answer. I’ll keep you posted. BTW, did you mean Florida by “us down here?” Or was that a reference to use peons (that could probably be spelled more than 1 way)?

            • Us peons of course. Though “peons” would not be my first choice of words. I was actually thinking of us down here in the progressive trenches of the blogosphere.

              Why would I single out my state as though I was some kind of nationalist? You must have got struck when it first went over your head. (winking)

              • Drumroll

                Actually, it went right over my head the first time. Caught it on the rebound though. (smiling) You know the old hand slap to the forehead?

              • Kim Qitqat Brechtel

                Peopns…..or pawns. it is those of us with no real power……….especially when those in power CHEAT!

          • Drawer22

            James Stone – What’s wrong with using WP? It’s a very effective anti-personnel munition.

            De Oppresso Liber

            • Opinions are also a matter of perception and belief. Belief is a soft word for indoctrination.

              I worked a bit in the 7th Psyops plant in Okinawa circa 1969. It was a revelation for me you could probably use too.

              Our military policies have gotten way out of hand. And for the most part for the sake of corporate profit and those resources such as oil that we just can’t seem to let go of. I understand the necessary discipline you are trained to respect. But surely you must sometimes in your own mind wonder why you are ordered to do those things you do. While the people you think you serve, sit fat and happy, oblivious to the perceived danger you are told exists to threaten us while we sleep?

              • Drawer22

                James Stone – To state, “Belief is a soft word for indoctrination,” is merely an indication that the psyops training you allude to having received didn’t take very well, if at all. (Yes, I’m fully PsyOps qualified. It’s one of my MOS’s.)

                The missions I accepted in combat were all voluntary. That’s the kind of SF unit for which I volunteered. Did I wonder about some of them? And do I still wonder who thought up some of those missions? You bet! Did I resent the fat, dumb, happy, and oblivious dipsquats who hadn’t the foggiest notion of the history they decided to repeat? No, only those who denigrated my service in their name while they wallowed in their ignorance.

                Your expressed perspectives on the reasons our country has engaged in armed conflict are so narrow as to be properly characterized as tunnel vision, if you truly believe that the dishonorable reasons are the only ones for which we fight. (For instance, if oil is the reason, then why, in victory, have we not received a single drop? The answer would be puzzling only to one who believes in leftist fairytales.)

                I do hope you differentiate between “military policies” and policies of the military and naval forces, as politicians are those who make “military policies,” not military and naval personnel. Presuming you know the difference, I’d have to agree that the military (and naval) policies of the past eight years were not grounded intelligently and were, therefore, “way out of hand.”

                De Oppresso Liber

                • “PsyOps qualified”? Are you serious? That is nothing I would ever brag about. What happened to the “honor” we were supposed to stand for as we spread our democracy on the tip of our military spear? Or was that just another “psyop” lie to The People?

                  US and THEM…

                  So we and they keep blood-lusting to the beat of our respective war-drums?

                  The powers-that-be have done a real, number on you brother. Your world doesn’t leave this planet with much hope of a future for all mankind. There can be little doubt of that…

                  I wonder, did you vote for Trump? Or are you a Clinton apologist, and wish she were holding the nuclear football now? Or in terms you better understand, if you could choose, which would you prefer? A knife in the back or a bullet to the brain?

                  Here are some words, phrases, food for thought, with regard to your amusing rebuttal regarding my assertions of “war for oil”.

                  1. Petrodollars (as in who controls resource trading)
                  2. Wall Street (as in oil futures trading)
                  3. Global markets (as in the concept of fungible use of global resources)
                  4. Supply Side demand (as in who controls market availability)

                  The point being you clearly don’t understand how the energy markets work, or the fact that OPEC is in league with the US, and between them control most of the global fossil fuel supply. Rex Tillerson had been busily working to bring Russia and Petroplast into that fold. By using distractions such as Syria, N. Korea and the staples of the middle east that we’ve already destroyed, using badly misinformed jarheads to do most of the dirty work and keep the amerikan sheeple entertained with their bloodlust and flag-waving idiocy

                  “Supply and demand” are psyop concepts as well as they are translated onto the public’s understanding of the reality they wish us to believe in.

                  The truth is that our entire economy is a fabrication designed to give the elite control over every aspect of our lives. With your help they continue to succeed.

                  The reality is that if we wanted to, we could function even better, as a species, on a limited-resource planet. If we gave up the concepts of “capital” and “money” altogether. The way Gene Roddenberry envisioned while you were in SE Asia ambushing “gooks”.

                  But no instead we drop the MOAB. Over 21k of TNT to kill a handful of people that we may never even be able to identify. Again, where is there any “honor” in that?

                  • Drawer22

                    James Stone – The bases of your rants are best treated by a psychiatric professional. That’s above my paygrade. In the meantime, don’t assume that your friends (should you have any) who were sufficiently fit to be accepted into the Marine Corps of the US Navy as fodder, have any corner on truth. They don’t.

                    Yous speak of PsyOps qualification being nothing you “would ever brag about (sic),” yet you do. That alone speaks toward schizoid tendencies and another facet of why I’d recommend professional assistance.

                    Wars and other armed conflicts are and can be honorable. Once engaged, however, today’s combat actions must be fought without the traditional guidelines of honor. Those considerations started eroding at least 700 years ago, and there’s no lessening in sight. Go back to video games, and let those who care for your safety do their jobs, snickering at your insistence that they die to keep combat honorable, while the enemy snickers just as much at a notion you imagine of butterflies mating with unicorns while balanced on a rainbow.

              • Drawer22

                James Stone- Spoken like a truly experienced video game warrior! As one who is voluntarily combat-experienced, I would *much* rather my enemy never know what happened. I prefer ambush to ranks advancing across open fields. You’d have served proudly in the British Army during the American Revolution, while I’d have been on the winning side, and happily so.

                Get some combat time. Then come back and give me your perspectives on what is fair.

                De Oppresso Liber

                • Hate to disappoint you, but I am not a “video game warrior”. Omega Race in the 80s arcade. A drone war game. No biological enemies there I’m afraid. Sorry.

                  If I were a “video game warrior” there’s a good chance I’d be a drone pilot don’t you think? So really that remark makes absolutely no sense as a rebuttal to my objection to “real” war. My impression has always been that was the reason the military invested so much in game theory and development; for future recruitment purposes?

                  Was I not supposed to know that, or is it you who is in the dark on that as well? Empire is a psyops business to it’s core you know. They don’t just use it on their declared enemies either…

                  “Ender’s Game”? Do you know it? The book by Orson Scott Card? They finally did a movie last year on it. The ultimate psyops to tease the warmonger spirit in us all.

                  And the opposite of “ambush” is no longer “ranks advancing across open fields”. Was that a rebuttal or a justification like “well they do it, so we must too”?

                  Can’t beat ’em, so join ’em?

                  I’m disappointed that you have so little regard for my intelligence, that all of your logic is only about choices within the realm of war and violence. As though there is no other choice but endless war. That’s certainly how the empire would like you to think.

                  So I suppose there’s really no surprise there, all things considered…

                  • Drawer22

                    James Stone – When discussing armed conflict, it is surprising that your concept of logic does not permit discussion of that very topic. Wow! Yes, when discussing armed conflict, most sane people would discuss options related to armed conflict. That you are unable to fathom why is an indication of a psychiatric disturbance, doubtless related to leftist concepts.

                    Ambush has been a recognized facet of armed conflict for quite some time. Read Mao’s “Little Red Book” or the writings of Ché Guevara for the manner in which unconventional warfare is fought. Then, as you’re more oriented toward conventional slaughter, orient toward classics upon which such notable warriors as Erwin Rommel cut their teeth. Even in conventional warfare, ambush is a recognized tactic. Get educated; then speak with authority.

                    De Oppresso Liber

                    • I oppose ALL war. How can I debate it’s logic? And I have read perhaps anything you might suggest. Maybe more. Doesn’t mean you can make a rulebook that fits all situations. You should stop reading books on warfare and start reading up on peace.

                      I used to think there might be exceptions, and I will defend myself or anyone else in proximity if threatened and I can. But I am 64 years old, and so far in my lifetime there has not been a single instance that “defense” has been a legitimate excuse. There has always been a hidden hand or two and there is always another agenda. Often hidden as well.

                      If i have learned anything, that still too many people have not; and as corny as it may sound, “war does not make peace”.

                      Except where the dead are concerned…

                      • Drawer22

                        James Stone – As you “oppose ALL war,” then just be grateful that there are well-trained, hardened warriors ready to assure your safety, while you bask in the sunlight of the peace they create for your meditations.

                        A word of caution: One defends against that of which one is afraid. The same applies to concepts of protection and guarding against whatever threat may be perceived. As long as one lives in fears promoting such perceptions of need, one will continue to attempt the avoidance of harm. In effect, however, avoidance creates the need of oppositional forces to fill that vacuum, just as defense strengthens the oppositional need to overcome the defense. In short, Grasshopper, your fears will bring the need for defense, bolstering the oppositional requirement to overcome your defenses.

                        Your denigration of the warrior is quite humorous. The four traditionally recognized professions (law, medicine, the clerics, and warrior) all strive toward the same goal: that the need for them will be rendered obsolete by their efforts. However, only one of those traditionally recognized professions has people with the courage to venture their lives regularly toward that most noble of objectives: Peace. In your philosophical meditations, you have many and much for whom and which, respectively, to be grateful. Being otherwise is self-centered, childish, selfishness, as gracious gratitude for the peace bought for you costs you nothing.

                        Enough free lessons, as it is pointless to try teaching a pig to sing. Celebrate your fears, young stud, and build defenses for others to breach. You’ve entered a game for losers, as both participating units lose, even for “winning.”

                        De Oppresso Liber

        • Did you watch DN today. Wow! what a great show Amy had. I won’t spoil it for you…

          • Drumroll

            No, I haven’t had a chance today and probably won’t tonight as I have trans work to do so I can take tomorrow morning off for my Community Emergency Response Team training. I’ll catch it tomorrow afternoon.

            • Well if you don’t I can swear as well as you think I know you that you would regret it if you knew what you had missed…

              I didn’t mean that to come out so possibly convoluted…

              • Drumroll

                No problem. You’re up past your bedtime too – only I’m 3 hours behind you so it isn’t quite so late here. (smiling)

                • And still up I am…

                  • Drawer22

                    James Stone – You’re sounding like Yoda, albeit without the wisdom. 🙂

                    De Oppresso Liber

                    • It was Anakin who slaughtered the young (and quite innocent) jedi children before he became Darth Vader. The general wisdom of Yoda and all jedi I highly suspect would not be compatible with endless war. Much less the use of such horrible [and cowardly] weapons as depleted uranium and white phosphorus. If someone claims the moral right of combat, they should at least face their [perceived] enemy, and not hide-kill from a distance.

                      • Drawer22

                        James Stone – With such ignorance as you publicly display, it’s likely you’d prefer the close combat and bloody slaughter borne of using pikes, maces, and swords. After all, such warriors faced their opponents, not hiding and killing from a distance — at least not until use of bow and crossbow. But wait! Trebuchets and catapults, along with wheeled, protective towers for the warriors inside were used to assault the enemy and get closer to the enemy, respectively. I suppose you’d decry such warriors as cowards. And the “cowards” defending castle walls used “horrible [and cowardly] (sic) weapons” like boiling oil, poured on those assaulting.

                        Judging from those you’d likely characterize generally as cowards, both past and present (Presumably in the future, as well!), you must think yourself a brave soul. Fine. Tell us upon what you base such a generous opinion of your character. Feel free to quote the citations for your multiple Medals of Honor and other awards for courage in battles you so despise.

                        De Oppresso Liber

                      • I’m not sharing this article for the story itself, but rather to share the words and journey of another marine who served longer ago than you did. It illustrates how some of your brothers chose different paths. And it explains a bit as to why.

                        I’d urge you to read it. If you really want me to have any respect for your opinions, you need to try and have something of an open mind. I’ve been hearing from your side in great detail all my life. Coming from a multi-generational military family and all. But I don’t think you have really listened to my side, other than to ridicule and show your misguided disdain.

                        Will you arbitrarily denounce a fellow jarhead so cavalierly?

                      • Drawer22

                        James Stone – Having read in full the article at the URL you gave, and having found it glaring with factual errors, it is overwhelmingly non-credible. (Bear in mind that, with my legal background, I’m aware that the credibility of evidence presented may be shown as being non-credible based on a single misstatement of fact. The article you hold up for my scrutiny misstates multiple times.)

                        Add to my legal background that of military intelligence, as well as the PsyOp training and education we’ve apparently both been given (though you disdain my training, education, and experience, but not your own), and one might easily understand that I’d have to keep the “open mind” you unnecessarily command me to have. Please do not tell me that which I need, as it only lessens your effectiveness at communicating that with which you intend to sway my opinion. (I’d think you’d know that from your PsyOp training, but you apparently slept through that block of instruction.)

                        As I don’t know what you mean when referring to “[my] side,” I’m rather astounded that you believe yourself knowledgeable about what I think and have decided, when I have made no conscious decision about subjects I am still gathering information. Fascinating! How long have you known yourself to be an omniscient god?

                        It’s difficult to take you seriously, when you insist on implying that I’ve been in a corps of the United States Navy. Let me be clear: I have never been in any naval unit, though I have traveled on naval vessels when being extracted.

                        As best I can gather, “[your] side” is that which protested and still protests that to which you erroneously refer as “the Vietnam War.” Extrapolating from that given assumption, it was then “[your] side” which peacefully protested at Travis Air Force Base, California, in 1968, and “peacefully” shot a fully 3-qualified friend of mine, depriving him of the tour in Vietnam for which he’d volunteered. Bearing in mind that I am also 3-qualified and that those who are so qualified are few, tending to be a rather small “family” in which we keep to ourselves and know many of our own, it is small wonder that my opinion of a poorly trained naval wannabe-warrior like yourself, who justifies such crime in the name of peace, is low on my list of those to admire. I don’t.

                        Please refrain from insulting me by lumping me in as a “jarhead.” I am far better trained and educated than that! A pity you aren’t.

                        De Oppresso Liber

                      • You do not give me much hope that mankind will ever find peace on earth. Not as long as such otherwise intelligent people such as yourself can so readily admit to being “far better trained and educated”, without seemingly ever considering the possibility that such is all part of an elaborate indoctrination process designed to keep the war machine going in order to enrich the elite who ultimately puppet master the military industrial complex for reasons that have long ago stopped being for anything remotely altruistic in nature.

                        I prefer to save and preserve life, not take it. And I have followed that creed my entire life, literally having saved first hand three people, and a fourth who years later thanked me for convincing them not to end theirs’. I’ve been in some very dangerous situations too, when much younger, and was able to resolve all of them peacefully. A shame that our leaders traditionally only do lip service in that regard, and have most often instead pursued conquest, control and domination. Where once we physically colonized, we now do so vicariously through our mafia banking and free-trade system. Even here at home where things like gentrification and lower class austerity are increasingly the norm. It’s all a work-in-progress, and has been since pretty much the dawn of civilization.

                        So if you really thought you were meant to defend democracy, then it is washington dc; the halls of congress and the white house where you really need to begin to do that.

                        But as you seem determined to do, I call things as I see them as well. I guess we’ll just have to leave it at that; unsettled as to which of us can see and which of us is blind…

        • Kim Qitqat Brechtel

          It IS us peons who actually have the empathy to care. Those in power have no hart, no soul and no empathy…….it would interfere with their profits!

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    • Florent de PYROPHOR

      It’s not a surprise. Depleted uranium is used in several kinds of weapons, including cruise missiles and heavyweight GBU bombs. Here is a list of proofs demonstrating this . The ICBUW and PAX have been focusing on a few weapons (i.e. the A10s bullets and tank shells) but these are only the TIP OF THE ICEBERG.

    • James Wherry

      1. Here’s the concern:

      “The use of DU in munitions is controversial because of concerns about potential long-term health effects.[5][6] Normal functioning of the kidney, brain, liver, heart, and numerous other systems can be affected by exposure to uranium, a toxic metal.[7] It is only weakly radioactive because of its long radioactive half-life (4.468 billion years for uranium-238, 700 million years for uranium-235; or 1 part per million every 6446 and 1010 years, respectively). The biological half-life (the average time it takes for the human body to eliminate half the amount in the body) for uranium is about 15 days.[8] The aerosol or spallation frangible powder produced by impact and combustion of depleted uranium munitions can potentially contaminate wide areas around the impact sites, leading to possible inhalation by human beings.[9]

      “The actual level of acute and chronic toxicity of DU is also controversial. Several studies using cultured cells and laboratory rodents suggest the possibility of leukemogenic, genetic, reproductive, and neurological effects from chronic exposure.[5] A 2005 epidemiology review concluded: “In aggregate the human epidemiological evidence is consistent with increased risk of birth defects in offspring of persons exposed to DU.”[10]”

      2. Here’s why they’re used:

      “Bullets, shells and missiles tipped with radioactive depleted uranium made every weapon in Iraq’s arsenal obsolete. The higher weight of DU shells allows American tanks to shoot twice as far, giving them a range of two miles.

      “During the [1991] Desert Storm terror campaign at least 944,000 rounds of DU ammo were fired from American A-10 Warthogs all over Iraq and Kuwait. The A-10 is an aircraft built around a 30mm, 7-barrel gattling gun that can spew 3900 rounds per minute.

      “When a depleted uranium tipped shell strikes a tank or armored personnel carrier it easily penetrates the armor and burns the crew alive. The impact also vaporizes the depleted uranium, creating an aerosol of radioactive heavy-metal particles which can spread as far as 190 miles on the wind.”

      3. Compared to 900,000+ rounds used in Gulf War I, the 5,000 rounds is a light use, but lying about the use of these rounds is wrong and it can be an indication that the liars KNOW that the use is not only “controversial,” but WRONG. Despite the value of these munitions, I maintain “when in doubt, don’t.” The long-term effects appear to have a scientific basis for real concern. I would not use these: spend more money on better, conventional weapons, that do not leave unintended victims glowing in the dark.

      • Zeet

        190 miles is likely hyperbole. I also find it hard to believe that the depleted uranium is vaporized and carried in the wind. Much more likely is that it simply undergoes a hypergolic reaction with other metals upon target impact, and simply melts and welds itself to other metals. Any chunks of metal simply fall to the ground once their ballistic energy is depleted, likely up to dozens, if not hundreds, of FEET from the target, not miles. Remember, depleted uranium is HEAVY, heavier than lead.

        • James Wherry

          Trust me: when it comes to this sort of science, I’m better off just quoting Wikipedia! I’ve never claimed to understand it. All I understand is “Radioactive = bad.” Twenty years from now, it’ll be the next “Agent Orange” and everyone will be standing around saying, “Well of COURSE it was too dangerous!”

        • Romi Elnagar

          Why shouldn’t DU vaporize? Many people who have talked about the US using it in Iraq have talked about how it vaporizes. That’s one reason why Iraq is so contaminated with the stuff.
          “Uranium munitions, pulverized and aerosolized by high velocity
          impacts (1+ miles/second up to 10 miles/sec for J-SSCM’s), reach
          temperature effects referred as “plasmas”, 8,000 – 15,000 degrees
          Kelvin. The pyrophoric nature of the uranium works synergistically
          with the hyper-velocity impact effects to instantly convert much of
          the uranium to UO2 (instant oxidation). The impact condition is
          referred to as a “phase change”. The uranium parts the targets
          molecular structure and vaporizes it at the point of contact. That’s
          why anti-tank and anti-armor DU penetrators leave very interesting
          holes – quite clean and smooth as if they cut through or burned
          through the armor instead of punching through it.” ~ “Upsilquitch” (a former DU inspector who writes anonymously)

          • Zeet

            That might be the case then. However, how long does it stay in vapor phase? I suspect not very long. This isn’t water we are talking about, but a massive metal molecule. I am highly doubtful about the 190 mile claim. I honestly think the drift area is more like hundreds of feet.

          • Zeet

            Aerosolized is definitely different from vaporized.

          • Zeet

            DU is a very heavy element. It will fallout.


      The corporations that profit from permanent war need us to be afraid. Fear stops us from objecting to government
      spending on a bloated military. Fear means we will not ask unpleasant questions of those in power. Fear permits the
      government to operate in secret. Fear means we are willing to give up our rights and liberties for promises of
      security. The imposition of fear ensures that the corporations that wrecked the country cannot be challenged.
      Fear keeps us penned in like livestock.

      — Chris Hedges,
      The Death of the Liberal Class

    • Will Crowther

      Depleted uranium is exactly this: Natural uranium which has been depleted of U-235, the fissile isotope for both reactors and weapons. Natural uranium includes 0.7 percent U-235. U. S. reactors use uranium fuel which has had the uranium-235 enriched to 2 or 3 percent Weapons grade is enriched to about 98 percent. Depleted Uranium, DU, has less than 0.7 percent U-235; it’s what’s left over after the U-235 has been used enriching the fuel or ‘explosive.’ DU is used because it’s heavier than lead and so capable of penetrating deeper armor.

      • Patricia P. Tursi

        spoken like true military…pierces armor. Why are be there in the first place? Do you want DU used in the US? We have not declared war on anyone. Why are we constantly at war? I thought we learned after Vietnam. We have no right to impose our might on any other country unless they declare war on the US or attack.

        • Will Crowther

          I have never been in the military. I thought some accurate information would be helpful. I am a nuclear engineer. I take no sides here.

        • James Wherry

          The “why are we there in the first place” is the right question, for sure, buy lying about the use is simply wrong – or an indication that someone knows the use of the weapons is SO WRONG they have to lie about it.

          I would never be involved in the Syrian Civil War, but yes, I would bomb ISIL to (1) Stop the genocide against Christians, Yezidi and Shi’ites; and (2) Defend America from ISIL-directed operations. Both of those are lawful basises within the U.N. Charter, a treaty under international law and legally binding on the USA.

          • Zeet

            Mr. Crowther is correct about DU’s use as a superior penetrator. The science basically comes down to how much psi you can put on armor, and the momentum that is imparted to DU rounds upon firing is very high and is maintained down range even in adverse weather conditions, increasing hit probability and lethality. I also believe there is a hypergolic reactive element to the use of DU rounds. I could be wrong on this though. After all, does it make sense that the DU in the bullet tip doesn’t react with the bullet metal? hmm

      • Patricia P. Tursi

        I apologize for my disrespectful tone. I have spoken with vets about this and they all say they like the DU because of the penetration. I’m angry about the high rate of leukemia in Iraq. I’m angry that we are going after the third of 7 countries that we planned to overthrow (Gen Wesley Clark). I am angry that we are the world ‘s worst terrorists and are bombing 7 countries killing children, families, and innocent people. Angry that the drone pilots had the highest suicide rate in the military because of the carnage that they observed. There is no reason on God’s Earth that the US should have installations in half the countries around the world….no reason except to control the world. Russia has closed down most of the nuclear plants, doesn’t have aerosol sprays, promotes organics, prohibits GMOs and it’s supposed to be barbaric? The piper will be paid, sooner or later. We citizens will do the paying but we didn’t do the playing. Your response seemed detached and cavalier. I believe that we need to address the human suffering.

        • Will Crowther

          No problem.

    • World Peace Now

      Depleted uranium’s half-life is about three billion years.
      It is a Weapon of Genetic Destruction. We are methodically poisoning the Middle East.
      Those responsible for DU deployment need to tried by the World Court for Crimes Against Humanity.

      • Patricia P. Tursi

        And deliberate? with the excuse that it is efficient.

        • Krishna E. Bera

          DU is also used to make armor, which only DU (or heavier elements) can penetrate. So DU needs to be banned from use entirely, not just as ammo.

          • Patricia P. Tursi

            Yes, Krishna…banned along with invading other countries for no reason.

            • Krishna E. Bera

              thats already illegal, but no country takes it seriously enough to do anything 🙁
              i’m worried about DU being used in civilian stuff because it then becomes armor and target during a war, besides leaking radioactivity all over the place during manufacture of course.

            • James Wherry

              America has not invaded either Iraq (this time around) or Syria. America is quite happily in Iraq at the request of that country’s own, lawful government. HAD the Iraqi forces (with or without Iran) been able to stop ISIL from taking al-Anbar province, Tikirit and Mosul, and making a real play for Kirkuk, I would REJOICE at America NOT being there. We should have left in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 – and not just 2011.

              As to Syria, I cannot support anyone much being in Syria except covert ops aimed squarely at developing battlefield intelligence against ISIL.

          • James Wherry

            Interesting: I had not been aware of the use of it to make armor. That makes me even more nervous.

            While DU in weapons is only 60% as radioactive as naturally-occurring uranium, if I knew there was a Uranium mine anywhere near where I lived, I’d MOVE! When we don’t even know the long-term effects of PCBs in plastics, it’s ridiculous to surround ourselves with things we DO know about!

            • marid

              The waste tailings piles from Uranium mining and enrichment in the SW US are huge and every second they release poisons into the environment. All the while the health of the local people suffers. But what’s a birth defect or fifty to the Merchants of Death who control us?

              • James Wherry

                Do the tailings release any poisons? To be useful, “uranium rich” dirt has to be reduced to uranium that is 20% or higher (medical) and more for military uses. The tailings are nowhere near that level of richness.

                I would WELCOME any information, as this only adds to what I think of as my legitimate concerns.

      • PietSmit

        the US shrug their shoulders about those courts. They did not ratify ICC (which comes closest to your ‘World Court for Crimes Against Humanity.’ and even threaten to invade The Hague if any US military or other officials should stand trial.. Google ‘The Hague Invasion Act’.
        They are eager to press others to charge warcriminals that don’t belong to their side, but are no part of it.
        So the ICC is just another Mickey Mouse court, like the Maleysian court that convicted Bush and Cheney some years ago. Esp. now with all the African countries leaving ICC.

        • America see’s itself at the head of the New World Order, a world government, whilst, at the same time, it distances itself from the vital role as one of the members of the ICC. What nerve they have to demean everyone else in the world by picking the laws to which it will be judged. They have the attitude necessary to shove their supposed superiority down our throats in the knowledge that they are making themselves a hated shadow of a once respected leader nation.

      • Zeet

        I believe you are wrong. DU’s half life is only 700 million years.

        • Romi Elnagar

          No, you are wrong. The half=life of DU is 4.5 billion years.

          • Zeet

            Yes it appears you are more right. Most DU is U-238, according to Wikipedia.

      • Are you telling me they are poisoning the land for millions or even billions of years? What’s the point in that?

    • tapatio

      The use of depleted uranium as a weapon should be made a war crime. It’s a weapon that goes on killing decades after the war.

      • Patricia P. Tursi

        thank you!

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